Text: Acts 18:1-18a | Listen to Message
How does God lead?
Corinth was one of the great crossroads of the Roman Empire, a center for commerce, politics, religion, and the arts and entertainment. Corinth was also a notoriously immoral place more interested in sport and sex than in anything spiritual. So when the apostle Paul arrived here on his Second Missionary Journey, he admits he came “in weakness and in fear and much trembling” (1 Cor. 2:3). He was at an emotional crossroads, having been weakened and discouraged by so much apathy and opposition toward the Gospel.
This text is important because Luke shows us five things that Paul looked to for direction and encouragement at this critical junction in his life – and God fully intends to lead and embolden His children with the same five things today.
1. Look to God’s purposes. Ask yourself often, “What is God’s purpose for my life right now?” Even if you don’t know the specific direction God wants you to take, you know you can be worshiping and loving God, walking in faith, and loving your neighbor in word and deed.
2. Look to God’s presence. When you’re at a crossroads in life, which do you seek more: advice or God? When you’re discouraged, which do you want more: happiness or God? Because of Christ, we get something far greater than just God’s presents; we actually get God himself!
3. Look to God’s promises. How do the promises of God guide and encourage you on a daily basis? What specific promises are giving you hope right now and transforming the way you view your circumstances?
4. Look to God’s people. When you face important decisions, do you rely on your own individual wants or do you involve the Christian community in your decision? When you’re at a crossroads emotionally, do you retreat into isolation and hide your stuff, or do you let others love and encourage you and bear your burdens for you?
5. Look to God’s providence. God isn’t going to guide you by giving you a new word of revelation that he failed to include in the Bible. But he will guide you through the myriad of ways he’s governing the affairs of your life and your world. So be faithful to pause and ask yourself, “What is God doing?”